• Nov 302010

    Kenya Journalists Gather for Launch of New Health Reporting Association

    If you had told me six months ago that trying to start a new journalism organization in Kenya would consume my every waking moment—and half my sleeping ones—I’d have chortled. I’d have accused you of excessive melodrama. I’d have told you to “talk to the hand.”

    After all, I'd helped set up a radio training workshop in Gulu, Uganda, a scant year after peace had been declared. I had stood toe-to-toe with abusive contractors and sexist station owners who’d refused to even acknowledge my existence.

  • Oct 232010

    Scientists and Journalists Working Together

    Editors Blog: Knight Fellow Rachel Jones emphasizes the importance of scientists and journalists working together.

    How many researchers does it take to switch on the "lightbulb" of insight about the benefits of learning to talk to reporters?

    About 20. And it really helps when one of them is the lead researcher on the Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine Impact Study (PCVIS), Dr. Anthony Scott.

  • Oct 232010

    With the Push of a Button, A New Era Begins

    Editors Note: Knight Fellow Rachel Jones talks about the new possibilities after receiving more than $43,000 for a new Health and Science Writers' Association.When I pushed the button on an email application for a Wellcome Trust Public Engagement grant back in late April, I was thinking a lot about the direction my Knight Health Fellowship would take in the months to come.

  • Sep 212010

    Measuring Impact

    I’m thinking a lot about the definition of the word “impact” these days. When I reflect on my past two years in Kenya, the meaning might seem clear at first.

    “Just what the heck is different about Kenyan media since my plane touched down in late June 2008?" Wow, that question almost felt egomaniacal as I typed it! How can one person expect to exert enough influence to quantify a tangible impact on an entire country’s media? In one year, or two….or 10, for that matter?

  • Sep 112010

    CONVERGING IMPACT: NTV and Daily Nation join forces on health policy coverage

    If this looks like a tightly cropped shot, it really isn't. The actual room where this scene took place was only about a 10 by 8 foot space tucked away in a back office at Webuye Hospital, Bungoma District, about two hours from Kisumu, Kenya.

    This setting mirrors hundreds of hospitals and clinics in Western Kenya, where every day, thousands of children develop severe symptoms of diarrheal disease. It happens because they live in villages and towns where there’s scarce access to clean water.

  • Aug 102010

    Carpe Diem: Covering Health In Kenya Post Referendum

    Two days after Kenyans defied expectations and peacefully, purposefully approved a new Constitution, I was processing two powerful emotions.

    The first one mirrored my overall mindset during the 2008 US Presidential Election, when the chance to participate in an historic event was literally intoxicating. Being able to fly home from my ICFJ Kenya program base to vote only heightened the excitement. I know many Kenyans are feeling that same tidal wave of impact at defying the naysayers through the power of the ballot.

    But the other sensation I’m feeling is deep relief.

  • Mar 182009

    Knight Fellow visits Internally Displaced Persons Camp in Kenya

    Editors Note: Rachel Jones visits Maai Mahiu Internally Displaced Persons Camp in Kenya.When I agreed to accompany Nairobi Star Reporter Wacui Makori to the Maai Mahiu Internally Displaced Persons Camp, the date of our journey didn’t register initially. But waking up on the morning of Friday, March 13th, the irony hit me right between the eyes.

    My first trip to an IDP camp occurred on July 7, 2007—7/7/07, which was considered a “lucky” day around the world.

  • Jan 292009

    Explosion rocks newspaper office -- and a journalist's instinct kicks in

    Editors Note: Fire in downtown Nairobi causes scare.The first time the lights went out during this morning’s news meeting, it was just a minor annoyance. Ditto the second time. After all, at Nation Media Group headquarters in the heart of downtown Nairobi, you can expect a powerful generator to kick in quickly whenever there’s a power outage. It’s already happened several times during my six-month tenure as a Knight Health Journalism Fellow based at the Nation Centre.